Could there have been a Lars-less Metallica? According to their original lead guitarist Dave Mustaine (of Megadeath fame), they were.
The Metal Sucks Web site notes than in a recent Rolling Stone interview, a Q&A with Mustaine went as follows:
Q: As far as you know, is it true that on the last Metallica tour Cliff Burton was on before he died, the band was planning on firing Lars Ulrich at the tour’s end?
A: That’s what Scott [Ian, Anthrax guitarist] told me. He said that when Metallica got home, that James, Cliff and Kirk were going to fire Lars.
The Metal Sucks post then goes on to report that Scott Ian of Anthrax claims the whole story ain't true, and that Lars owns the name Metallica: "Good luck ever kicking him out."
The post then questions whether Ian was even telling the truth because he's lied before. For the whole gossipy story, be sure to read the post. They're not calling it "The Feel Good Feud of the Summer" for nothing.
Via: The Daily Swarm